Decided on February 22,2021

Ranjana Thakur Wife Of Niranjan Thakur Appellant
STATE OF BIHAR Respondents


Mohit Kumar Shah, J. - (1.) The present writ petition has been filed for quashing the Office Order contained in Memo no. 316 dated 20.02.2020, issued under the signature of Deputy Development Commissioner, Munger, whereby and whereunder the petitioner has been directed to pay a sum of Rs. 2,48,226/- for the damage caused to the Government Exchequer under the plantation work, as per the directions issued by the Rural Development Department, Bihar, Patna vide Memo dated 12.12.2019. The petitioner has also prayed for quashing that part of the report dated 31.12.2019 which pertains to the petitioner herein.
(2.) The brief facts of the case are that the petitioner was the Mukhia of Khara Panchayat, Tarapur, at the relevant time and he had written a letter dated 23.11.2015, addressed to the Deputy Development Commissioner of Rural Development Agency, Munger about non-transparency in payment of the work done under the MANREGA Scheme relating to Gram Panchayat, Khara. The Commissioner, Munger Rural Development Department, Government of Bihar, Patna had then written a letter dated 12.12.2019 for submitting a report regarding misappropriation and taking action against those persons who are found guilty. The Committee headed by Director, Accounts Administration and Self Employment, District Rural Development Agency, Munger as also comprising of other members i.e. the Executive Engineer, Munger and Programme Officer, Sangrampur had submitted a report dated 31.12.2019 to the Deputy Development Commissioner, finding 11 persons guilty of indulging in damage of plantation work and had recommended to make recovery of a sum of Rs. 36,13,961/- and as far as the petitioner is concerned, recommendation was made for recovery of a sum of Rs. 2,48,226/- on account of the damage of the plantation work in Tarapur Block. Thereafter, the impugned order dated 20.02.2020 has been issued by the Deputy Development Commissioner, Munger directing the petitioner to deposit a sum of Rs. 2,48,226/- within a period of 10 days.
(3.) The learned counsel for the petitioner has submitted that neither the petitioner was given any notice to participate in the inquiry conducted by the aforesaid Three-Men Committee nor any notice has been given to the petitioner to submit a whole-sole defence regarding the punishment of recovery of a sum of Rs. 2,48,226/-, hence the entire action of the respondents including the impugned order dated 20.02.2020 is bad in law on account of violation of the Principles of Natural Justice.;

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